The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

April 21, 2013

Letters to the Editor 4/21/13


The News Courier

The News Courier encourages letters to the editor. Submissions should be no more than 400 words and should include a name, address and telephone number for verification. Submissions that do not meet requirements are subject to editing. Send letters by noon on Thursdays to P.O. Box 670, Athens, AL, 35613, or email to adam@athensnews-courier.com.

Help keep children safe

Dear Editor:

April is Child Abuse Prevention and Sexual Assault Awareness Month. The thought of a child being sexually abused strikes horror in the hearts of those of us who love them. Most of the time child sexual abusers are master manipulators and people the child trusts

A staggering one in three girls and one in six boys will be victims of sexual abuse by the time they are 18. What can adults do?  Tell our children often that we want to keep them safe and to tell us if they don’t like being around certain people. Explain to them that sometimes people who hurt them will try to trick or bribe them and will tell them not to tell anybody — because nobody will believe them, the abuse is their fault, or that, if they  tell, they or their family or pets will be hurt.

Unfortunately, some adult survivors report that a caregiver knew about the abuse they were enduring as a child and did nothing. It is important, therefore, for anyone to report suspected child abuse to DHR.

    Teens tend to talk more to their peers than to adults. We can inform teens of what to do if a friend confides in them about experiencing sexual or dating abuse — believe their story, don’t gossip, and encourage them to tell trusted adults who can help them.  Red flags that indicate a dating partner is abusive include behaviors such as isolating the victim from friends, telling them what to wear, who they can talk to, checking up on them, and emotional or physical abuse which can include sexual abuse. Look for red flags before starting to date someone.

     It takes a lot of courage for a child to tell that they are being hurt by someone who could be a family member, friend, or someone they have fallen in love with. We, as the trusted adults in their lives, cannot let them down, and we must follow through with our promise to protect them and keep them safe as long as it is within our power to do so.

     We must, as individuals and as a society, continue to raise awareness regarding issues such as violence, and to take a stand against oppression of any kind, which is one of the root causes of exploitation.

Sincerely,

Christa Crabtree

Crisis Services of North Alabama

Athens

Politician souls in jeopardy

Dear Editor:

Can anyone understand what is happening with this country, our elected representatives, and many upstanding citizens?

According to the news media many of “our” elected representatives are controlled by lobbyists that represent big organizations, and promise something in return if they introduce a bill, or vote for passage of a bill. Unfortunately, in most cases most of these bills are contrary to the benefit or welfare of the citizens that voted for them. The more of these bills they pass, the more it oppresses the middle class, seniors and needy.

Just how can these representatives (that claim to be Christians) look in the mirror, or face the voters that believed their false rhetoric? Many times I think about these rich people and corporations, how they like to pride themselves about all the things they have. Then, it reminds me of the many places in the Bible that tell about this type of people and judgment day; they’ll be wailing and gnashing of teeth.

I also think of many upstanding citizens that may or may not be Christians, although many claim to be even though they do not seem to remember what the “word” says about your fellow man, mostly the oppressed and poor. Some even believe that if you want to help the poor, you are some sort of communist, although throughout the Bible it stresses the need to help the poor, “not the rich.” In fact there are many places it tells of the penalties that these rich people like to brag about all of the wonderful things they have amassed, and want to show off some time it’s called status.

I would rather have a small house, automobile and rowboat, than a huge $50 million mansion, $100 thousand automobile and $20 million super yacht. I would rather satisfy a gracious God in the things that I do, rather than have very expensive things, which in all probability causes me to lose my soul.

I might add that I believe many of our politicians will, in all probability, suffer an undesirable fate, as according to the news media, many of them have sold their souls to corporations, organizations and rich persons, at the expense of the less fortunate (that voted for them).

Sincerely,

Capt. F.E. “Jack” Morgan (retired)

Athens

Take a look at Common Core

Dear Editor:

Alabama career ready and college ready standards are minimum academic standards mandated by the Alabama Board of Education (not a ceiling) for all of our Alabama schools in order to better prepare our children for careers and college. These standards also provide some assurance of transferability between 45 of 50 partnering states, which gives us in North Alabama the ability to attract industry and professionals with children into our communities from other states.

These standards are widely accepted by educators, school administrators and parent teacher groups in Alabama but are opposed by conservative activist groups and the Republican Party in general. Both the state Republican Party and the national Republican Party have resolved for repeal of these Common Core Standards strongly suggesting these standards insinuate federal control of our schools and further remove the parent from their responsibility. These concerns are based wholly on the totality of the Common Core State Initiative, which includes curriculum, testing and data mining of students and teachers nationally. Within the curriculum is imbedded certain elements that should concern parents, teachers, students and taxpayers. I’ll simply suggest those to be extreme left wing, radical, socialist, atheist, progressive, communist ideals. I too object and have concerns.

However, the fact is Alabama BOE did not adopt curriculum and selected only the math and language arts portions of the standards. Here sits the problem. Local school boards and administrators along with the oversight of engaged parents and teachers in our community will decide what and how our students are taught. This program is 75 percent implemented at a great cost to taxpayers. Teachers and administrators support the program, but the Legislature is considering repeal based on information that I believe is not factual. Please look at this issue and contact your legislators. Legislative Office executivedirector@lcld.us.

Sincerely,

Rex Davis

Athens